CIF cuts year into two sports seasons

This morning the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) determined that high school sports in California will begin in January and have cut the year down from three competitive seasons to two.

CIF’s press release is posted below:

“The California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) has determined, in collaboration with our 10 Sections, that education-based athletics for the 2020-2021 school year will begin with a modified season of sport schedule. Our calendar reflects the season for each CIF sport and the last date for Section Championships and Regional/State Championships in those sports where a Regional/State Championship is currently offered.

Following this announcement, each CIF Section Office will release their own calendar to reflect regular season starting and ending dates and Section playoffs. It is anticipated that most Section start dates will commence in December 2020 or January 2021.


We are continuously monitoring the directives and guidelines released from the Governor’s Office, the California Department of Education, the California Department of Public Health, and local county health departments and agencies as these directives and guidelines are followed by our member schools/school districts with student health and safety at the forefront.

As these guidelines change, CIF Sections may allow for athletic activity to potentially resume under the summer period rules of the local Section. Also, given this calendar change, the CIF has temporarily suspended Bylaws 600-605 (Outside Competition) in all sports for the 2020-21 school year (see below for more specific information related to these changes).”

High School Sports To Start in January

The CIF Central Section released the schedules for its two seasons, Fall and Spring for 2020-2021, and have highlighted a few points.

First, the Section is extending the “Summer period” for all sports through Dec. 12. The fall sports will be cross country, girls and boys water polo, boys and girls volleyball and football with practice officially beginning on Dec. 14.

Cross country, water polo and volleyball can have their first officially sanctioned games on Dec. 28, and North County football will officially return on Jan. 7.

The Spring sports — wrestling, baseball, softball, swim and dive, competitive cheer, boys and girls soccer, tennis, and golf — will have their start dates moved to the Spring. Soccer and can begin to practice on Feb. 22, swimming, wrestling, and basketball will start on March 8 with the rest of the sports beginning on March 15.

New Central Section Commissioner Ryan Tos said in his email to athletic directors, “This schedule also allows for normal Section Championship experiences and opportunities in all sports. The only exception is that football playoff brackets will be eight-team brackets as this allows schools to maintain an 11-week regular season with 10 contests.”

Tos added that they are working on a plan that will not eliminate any teams from the football playoffs and may even consider adding divisions, “if necessary.”